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The Ins And Outs Of Personal Injury Law: What You Need to Know

The Ins And Outs Of Personal Injury Law

The last thing anybody wants is to find themselves injured due to the pure negligence of another person. However, finding yourself in that exact situation is one of the more common civil suits that enters a courtroom. Learning everything there is to know about personal injury cases, including how much is on the table to win, can help a person understand if such a lawsuit is right for them. 

What is a Personal Injury Lawsuit? 

Personal injury is a form of a civil lawsuit that falls under tort law, which specifically deals with the avenue of law that covers rectifying wrongdoings against one person by another person or an organization. The point of a personal injury lawsuit is to sue the other party for damages that will make a person whole, typically from a monetary standpoint, for the injuries they suffered as a result of the other parties’ actions. 

What Are the Principles of Personal Injury Law? 

For those unfamiliar with the process of a personal injury lawsuit, there are a few crucial components that must be proven in court. On top of these four principles, it must also be shown that negligence was involved in the person’s actions, as intent to injure is a criminal act. Negligence refers to acting in such a way that there is a disregard for those around you in such a way that a reasonable person in the same situation would not act the same. The aforementioned main principles to prove, however, include: 

  1. Duty of Care

First and foremost, a person must prove that the party who injured them had a duty of care to act in such a way that they would stay out of harm’s way. A common example would be a driver on the open road who has a duty of care to operate their vehicle in a responsible manner that doesn’t put others in danger. 

  1. Breach of Duty of Care

Second, it must be shown that the party who supposedly caused the accident fully breached their duty of care through negligence. Using the above example, a driver eating while on the road, only to drop their food and take their eyes off the road to grab it, has breached their duty of care to act in a reasonable and safe manner. 

  1. Causation

Third, the plaintiff must demonstrate to the court that the previous breach of duty directly led to the injuries that the plaintiff suffered. Sticking with the same example, the driver taking their eyes off the road to grab the food may have ran a red light that they didn’t see because of the distraction. 

  1. Damages

Finally, it must be demonstrated that the injuries the plaintiff suffered warrant the damages they are requesting from the court. After all, a person cannot sue another person for injuries unrelated to the accident, which is why this fourth point is required. Medical bills or other expenses must be shown to the court to justify these damages. 

How Much Can Be Won from Personal Injury Lawsuits? 

While the amount a person can be compensated from a personal injury lawsuit varies depending on the type of lawsuit, there are certain averages. Specifically, the majority of individuals will walk away with around $25,000, though this can rise into the hundreds of thousands for cases such as medical malpractice. The details of your specific case along with any special circumstances will come into account during the trial. On top of this, the majority of civil cases never reach trial, which means settlement may occur. 

The Cost of Personal Injury Lawsuits 

In most cases, you will only incur a fee from your lawyer if you lose your case and they are on a contingent fee structure. This means that they take a percentage of the amount you are compensated, typically 33-40% depending on the case, but the upside is that you don’t pay anything if you lose. 

The Bottom Line

After being involved in an accident that somebody else caused and choosing to live with the injuries you sustained, you are simply leaving money on the table. Consider reaching out to an accredit personal injury lawyer who can walk you through the details of your case in order to determine how much you can potentially garner from a lawsuit. Evaluate this total to determine whether or not the costs of the lawsuit exceed the amount you stand to win. 


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